Author Topic: Convection Bake / Toaster Oven - Energy Usage in the Kitchen  (Read 740 times)


  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
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Has anyone replaced their use of a stove by getting a small Convection Bake Oven (aka toaster oven, but I find the convection bake ones work a lot better than ones with a simple toaster element)?

Does anyone have some quantitative evidence of the change in energy use? I have a Kill-A-Watt meter but my apartment's oven is 240V so I have no way to measure my oven's use! I have audited most other things in my apartment but the "unmeasured" category is a little bit bigger than just the oven. The other big bleeds are the fridge, which I can't do anything about, and my computer monitors (about 50W each, new ones are about 12W) but they are pretty nice ones and not worth replacing til they break.

I lost my microwave (it was my ex's when she moved out) and haven't wanted to get another one. However I do tend to meal-prep. Lately I have just been cooking things that don't need reheating or reheat more easily on a stovetop. But a lot of things come out better when re-baked, and heating up my entire oven (despite it being a compact one) is not super-efficient for one meal. I think even using the stovetop to heat up a pot is probably bleeding off a lot of energy into the surrounding eair.

I am curious about other energy-saving tips on an electric range. Has anyone moved to a single / 2 burner induction setup and compared that to an electric range? How about something like an instant pot / electric pressure cooker for reheating? I would expect that to transfer a lot more energy directly to the food and lose less into the air.

How about a flame-retardant, reflective/insulated box for your convection oven to retain even more energy? Some kind of reflective or insulating setup for your electric range to transfer more heat into the pot and keep it there, sort of a DIY instapot-like setup?

BTW, this is just a fun hobby for me, I do realize I am chasing pennies. I am more concerned with minimizing energy use overall than the actual ROI on energy costs. For me, this is in the context of off-grid energy where every BTU and kWh counts, so spending a few more $$$ up front for a kitchen setup that is more efficient could mean a smaller battery / solar panel setup. Plus it's just interesting to see where "modern" (aka invented in 1950) appliances just waste energy for the sake of cheapness and convenience.

EDIT: meant to put this in the Ask A Mustachian board... can a mod help me out?
« Last Edit: July 24, 2018, 02:17:12 PM by drachma »


  • Stubble
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Re: Convection Bake / Toaster Oven - Energy Usage in the Kitchen
« Reply #1 on: July 25, 2018, 09:23:00 AM »
yes, i switched from microwave to convection toaster oven several years ago.  i don't have killawatt data so i can't say for sure whether the small oven uses more or less energy.

i use the solid tray that comes in the toaster and wrap the food in foil to reheat.  takes 12-15 minutes for most items but once you get rolling with your toaster you'll get a feel for time/temp it takes to get it done.  make the switch, it's worth it.


  • Pencil Stache
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Re: Convection Bake / Toaster Oven - Energy Usage in the Kitchen
« Reply #2 on: July 26, 2018, 11:26:17 AM »
We use our convection bake toaster oven all the time. I find it's perfect for heating up frozen slices of pizza. Throw a couple of slices in, set the convection bake to 350F and wait for the beep. Another minute or two after it hits 350 and the pizza is perfect.

My wife likes it for heating up all sorts of small items.


  • Magnum Stache
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Re: Convection Bake / Toaster Oven - Energy Usage in the Kitchen
« Reply #3 on: July 31, 2018, 12:39:34 PM »
We have an Instant Pot, and empirically, it heats the kitchen up a lot less than the stove or oven in the summer.  The metal lid is quite hot when under pressure, but the rest of the unit is very well insulated.

I haven't done energy calculations on it, but I plan to get an Energy Doctor or similar at some point, so could probably do the math on it.

Stash Engineer

  • Bristles
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Re: Convection Bake / Toaster Oven - Energy Usage in the Kitchen
« Reply #4 on: July 31, 2018, 01:06:04 PM »
PTF.  Firing up the oven to bake one or two potatoes or a small frozen pizza seems so wasteful to me also.  The only downside is having to store yet another kitchen appliance. 


  • Bristles
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Re: Convection Bake / Toaster Oven - Energy Usage in the Kitchen
« Reply #5 on: July 31, 2018, 11:35:15 PM »
Our oven died a couple years ago and we have been unable to get it fixed and unmotivated to get a new one.  I do a lot of cooking though and have switch to using our outdoor propane grill for just about anything that needs baking (or grilling of course).  You might also want to look into air fryers and see if that is something that can do more for you than a regular toaster oven.